Avoriana chose this book for the RITA® Reader Challenge, and assigning the grade was the hardest part for her.
Ahoy (really, ahoy, get a load of that cover): plot summary! After a decade on the road, single mom Mimi Green gives up her rock star dreams and goes home to Crab Creek, Maryland. Her troubled son needs stability. Grandparents. A good school and friends his own age. She’s not looking for a new father for Jack—but when she meets Ian Berzani she may need the handsome sailor for herself!
When Ian nabs a nine-year-old trespasser in the family boatyard, he thinks, miniature rebel without a clue. One look at the kid’s mother and Ian’s thoughts veer into dangerous, uncharted territory. Mimi was tempting him to stay. The timing couldn’t be worse for a man three months, seven days and eleven hours from a lifelong dream of sailing around the world. He doesn’t want an instant family to change his plans, but how can he set sail and leave his heart behind?
And here is Avoriana’s review:
This book deserved to be nominated for its sense of place and the heroine’s relationship with her son.
The Chesapeake Bay location is very well done. I could smell the salty sea air, with Crab Creek, the bay, the marina, and Mimi’s parents’ bar the Laughing Gull seeming very real. The visuals of Jack learning to sail are cinematic.
I also liked Mimi and her son Jack’s relationship. Both characters were very well drawn, with Mimi at a watershed moment in her life and Jack in danger of flunking out of school. Mimi and Jack’s homework wars, and Mimi’s anxiety about alienating her son, were very real to me.
Ian, the hero, didn’t work for me and neither did his and Mimi’s relationship. Ian is about thirty years old, lives in a great town, has a great relationship with his family and a good job, and is building a boat to leave and sail around the world for several years. Why would he do that? I could understand if he was 17, 21, or 25, but at this point in life unless he just got divorced or something he should have had his adventures and be thinking about how to contribute to his community. He’s immature.
Mimi and Ian don’t interact enough to justify their growing feelings for each other. The relationship feels junior high, the tone is too light, and Ian is too immature for their romantic story line to be successful.
An Unexpected Father is available at <a data-cke-saved-href=”<a href=” href=”<a href=” http:=”” http://www.amazon.com=”” exec=”” obidos=”” asin=”” 0373753071=”” trashybooks-20″=”” target=”_blank”>Amazon | Kindle | BN & nook | AllRomance | Book Depository | WORD Brooklyn’s eBookstore | eHarlequin.com